Integrative Aquaculture and Agriculture: Nitrogen and Phopshorous Recycling in Maricopa, Arizona.
AuthorStevenson, Kalb T.
Aquaculture -- Arizona.
Soils -- Nitrogen content -- Arizona.
Agricultural wastes -- Recycling.
Committee ChairFitzsimmons, Kevin
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractA study was conducted in Maricopa, AZ over three field cropping seasons from December 2001 through April 2003 in order to determine the effects of fish effluent irrigations on field crops and to determine the sustainability of nutrient recycling through an integrative aquaculture-agriculture system. Treatments were designed to compare current fertilization and irrigation methods to possible integrative strategies in order to conserve natural resources. The discharged outflow from two sources of irrigation water, (well water and effluent from a fish pond/reservoir), were tested throughout the duration of the study. Maricopa's NO3-rich well water, was consistently found to contain slightly higher total N concentrations than the fish effluent, which contained higher NH4, organic N, and PO4 concentrations. Unfavorable spatial distribution of pond sludges (containing significantly higher amounts of N and P than well water) resulted in the remainder of large stores of nutrients along the pond bottom. Because a nutrient sink was created within these pond reservoirs, fish effluent irrigations were found to have no significant effect on cotton or barley yields. Vegetative plant growth, however, was significantly affected in several instances, probably by the slow, yet advantageous process of organic matter degradation near soil surfaces. Any significant increases in vegetative growth were found only in effluent-irrigated plots and occurred later in crop seasons. Analysis of the pond sludge confirmed that if pond sediments could be more efficiently removed and applied to land, the benefits from such an integrative system could have great ecological and financial benefits (i.e. decreasing chemical fertilizer use, using water to a greater potential, producing an extra crop of fish, and having lower fertilization costs).
Degree ProgramSoil, Water and Environmental Science